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Oklahoma State University

HESA Faculty

Dr. Stephen Wanger

Stephen Wanger, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Co-Program Coordinator of Higher Education and Student Affairs
309 Willard Hall
Stillwater, OK 74078
Phone: (405) 744-3982

The research of Dr. Stephen (Steve) Wanger explores international issues in higher education, with a particular emphasis on efforts across the globe to create regional areas for higher education. This research emphasis embraces considerations such as transnational and national public policy, student and faculty mobility, the finance of higher education, curricula development, the leadership of change, and institutional and disciplinary stratification. Dr. Wanger has been instrumental in the development of program collaborations with universities in Thailand, Vietnam, Belize, Mexico, and China.

Dr. Wanger has a Ph.D. from Purdue University and holds the Don and Cathey Humphreys Endowed Chair in the School of International Studies. As a co-Program Coordinator in the Higher Education and Student Affairs program, he focuses on the strategic direction of the program, prospective students, and collaborations/working partnerships with other programs both local and international. 

Dr. Candace Gann

Kerri S. Kearney, M.B.A., Ed.D.

Associate Professor
Co-Program Coordinator of Higher Education and Student Affairs
315 Willard Hall
Stillwater, OK 74078
(405) 513-2043

Dr. Kerri Kearney’s research and service focus on higher education through the lens of former foster youth in college and on organizational issues. She is the founder of the R is for Thursday Network of Oklahoma, which studies and supports former foster youth in college. Dr. Kearney is published in diverse fields including management and executive coaching, education, and qualitative research. In 2006, one of her research articles was named one of “The 50 Most-Frequently-Read Articles” for Qualitative Research. She is also published in the Journal of College Student Development, the Community College Journal of Research and Practice and other higher education venues. In 2020, her research on foster alumni in college will be published in the field’s top tier journal the Review of Higher Education.

Dr. Kearney has an M.B.A. in management and an Ed.D. She spent over 20 years as an organizational consultant before entering academia. She holds the Christine Cashel Professorship in Higher Education and Student Affairs. As a co-Program Coordinator, she focuses on academic planning/coordination, including various infrastructure and support systems for the program’s graduate students. 

Dr. Tami Moore

Tami Moore, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Stillwater: 217 Willard Hall, Stillwater, OK 74078
Tulsa: Main Hall 2439, 700 N. Greenwood Ave., Tulsa, OK 74106
(918) 549-8107

Tami L. Moore is associate professor of Higher Education and Student Affairs and serves as co-Director of the OSU-Tulsa Center for Public Life.  Her scholarly work examines various roles that universities – faculty, students, and universities as institutional actors – play in the communities they serve. Her dissertation won the American Educational Research Association Dissertation of the Year Award in Division J/Postsecondary Education; articles based on this work appear in the Journal of Community Engaged Scholarship and as part of the Association for the Study of Higher Education’s monograph series published by John Wiley and Sons.  From 2006 to 2010, she was the founding co-director of the Emerging Engagement Scholars Workshop of the Engagement Scholarship Consortium. Over the last decade, more than 200 advanced graduate students, early career faculty and university extension professionals working across the United States and Canada have participated in this unique professional development opportunity.  Her work on how faculty build scholarly agendas grounded in a commitment to community engagement is published in the Journal of Higher Education Outreach and Engagement, and the top-tier Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning.  She currently serves on the editorial board of the International Research Journal for Service Learning and Community Engagement.

She is a regular participant in research exchanges with the Kettering Foundation, convening with community members and policy makers to explore questions about what it takes to make democracy work as it should and how universities contribute to this work.  In this same vein, she led the research team working through the Sabo Center for Democracy and Citizenship at Augsburg University to document 25 years of working across difference to solve public problems through Public Achievement, a youth empowerment philosophy implemented in 34 countries around the world.  Their book, Awakening Democracy through Public Work:  Pedagogies for Empowerment, will be published in November 2018 by Vanderbilt University Press.

Through the OSU-Tulsa Center for Public Life, Moore is part of the core organizing team for Cowboys Coming Together, a structured dialogue program on the OSU-Stillwater campus created through a Fund for Positive Engagement grant from Campus Compact.  CCT uses the Everyday Democracy’s Dialogue to Change model to engage students, administrative staff, and faculty in creating positive change in the university community.

Dr. Amber Manning-Ouellette


Amber Manning-Ouellette, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
310Willard Hall, Stillwater, OK 74078
(405) 744-9445

Dr. Amber Manning-Ouellette is an Assistant Professor in Higher Education and Student Affairs at Oklahoma State University.  She also serves as the master’s program coordinator, responsible for recruitment, selection, advising, and curriculum development for both the Master’s in Higher Education and College Student Development programs.  Her research foci include socially just leadership education, student learning outcomes, student cognitive development, and first-year student transition.

Dr. Manning-Ouellette is a scholar practitioner and has authored several articles and book chapters including research on: health care reform and higher education published in the NASPA Women in Higher Education Journal, the differences in student learning during an online and traditional course published in the Journal of Leadership Education and how service-learning influences the persistence of women in STEM fields published in the Journal of the First Year Experience and Students in Transition. She is the recipient of the 2016 ACPA and FYE grant for her research on women in STEM and service-learning.  Dr. Manning-Ouellette was selected as one of five Iowa Campus Compact Faculty Fellows for 2016-2017.  In 2017, she received the Gender and Sexuality Equity Research Award and the Wilbur L. Layton Faculty Recognition Award at Iowa State University.  Finally, in 2018 she was awarded the excellence in undergraduate teaching by a lecturer at Iowa State University.

Previously, Dr. Manning-Ouellette worked in student affairs administration for over 6 years while completing her Doctorate of Philosophy in Educational Administration and Higher Education at Southern Illinois University Carbondale (SIUC).  During that time, she served as the director of enrollment management for the College of Business, focusing on the recruitment and retention strategies of undergraduate students.  In addition, she served as a student success coordinator for the first-year experience office where she oversaw 90 sections of first-year seminar courses, developed co-curricular programs, and managed faculty development.

Affiliated Faculty


 John Mark Day, Ph.D.

Director of Leadership and Campus Life
232 Student Union
Stillwater, OK 74078
(405) 744-5488


Dr. Pam Ehlers

Pam Ehlers, Ed.D.

Director of Career Services
360 Student Union
Stillwater, OK 74078
(405) 744-5253

Dr. Pam Ehlers is the Director of Oklahoma State University Career Services. She completed both her bachelors and masters degrees in education from Oklahoma State University, a career counseling specialist degree from Pittsburg State University, and a doctoral degree in higher educational leadership from the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville.

Pam returned to her alma mater as Director of OSU Career Services in June 2006 after serving 13 years at Pittsburg State University as Director of Career Services. She is a National Certified Counselor (NCC), a National Certified Career Counselor (NCCC), a Distance Credentialed Counselor (DCC), a Master Career Counselor (MCC), Master Career Development Professional (MCDP), and a National Career Development Association (NCDA) Global Career Development Facilitator (GCDFI) Trainer and eLearning Instructor. She has over 28 years’ experience in the field of career counseling and development, graduate teaching, and administration in higher education.

Dr. Kathryn Gage

Kathryn Gage, Ph.D.

Executive Director for Student Affairs
201 Whitehurst Hall
Stillwater, OK 74078
(405) 744-5328

Dr. Kathryn Gage serves as Executive Director for Student Affairs.  She oversees the division’s assessment program, manages the Leadership OSU mentor program, and serves as the institutional representative for former foster youth.  Dr. Gage directs various grant programs for the division, and serves as liaison to the Center for Sovereign Nations.  Her previous experience includes the role of Vice President for Student Affairs, as well as work in financial aid, career services, and institutional development.

Dr. Gage serves as a peer corps reviewer for the Higher Learning Commission.  Additionally, she serves as chair-elect of AmeriCorps Oklahoma, and is the Oklahoma representative in the States for Service Coalition. She holds both a master’s and Ph.D. in College Student Counseling and Personnel Services.

Dr. Lisa Kerr

Lisa Kerr, Ed.D.

Director of the Vulcan Materials Academic Success Center
University of Alabama at Birmingham
Education Building 240
901 13th Street South
Birmingham, AL 35294
(205) 934-8184

Dr. David Mariott

David Mariott, Ph.D.

Assistant Director of Undergraduate Admissions
324 Student Union
Stillwater, OK 74078
(405) 744-7425

Dr. David Mariott currently serves as the Senior Assistant Director of Undergraduate Admissions at Oklahoma State University and leads the Division of Enrollment Management and Marketing’s data management and research initiatives. Prior to OSU, Dr. Mariott worked in residential life at Missouri State University and at a policy research center at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.  He earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Missouri, masters' degrees from the University of Arizona and Missouri State University, and his PhD from Oklahoma State University.  Dr. Mariott’s research interests include higher education public policy, postsecondary access and college choice, and the history of higher education.

Dr. Leon McClinton Jr.

Leon McClinton, Jr., Ph.D.

Director of Housing and Residential Life
100 Iba Hall
Stillwater, OK 74078
(405) 744-9164

Dr. Leon McClinton, Jr., McClinton currently serves as Director of Housing & Residential Life at Oklahoma State University. Developing strategic plans for a residential curriculum model including academic- and student affairs involvement is essential to maximizing opportunities for student development in the residential communities. McClinton holds a Ph.D. in educational leadership, a master¹s degree in human resource development, and a bachelor of science in textile management from Clemson University. He has worked in University Housing & Residential Life for over 26 years and during that time he received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Clemson University Residence Hall Association and was also named Student Affairs Employee of the Year by Clemson University.

McClinton provided leadership for one of the largest residential life programs in the United States, encompassing 9,125 on-campus students in 47 residence halls, while working at Virginia Tech. He is currently responsible for directing the Housing & Residential Life program for nearly 7,000 on-campus residential students in 26 on-campus residential communities and 6 family-first apartment neighborhoods, with overall supervisory responsibilities for 20 professional staff, 20 graduate assistants, and 320 undergraduate student staff members at Oklahoma State University.

While providing leadership on-campus, he has also been committed to remaining active in professional organizations and expanding his sphere of influence off campus, by serving as a faculty member for the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA) Region IV-West Mid-Level Institute, National Housing Training Institute (NHTI), Southeastern Housing Officers Regional Entry Level Institute (SEAHO RELI), authoring a chapter on Greek Housing that appeared in a multi-volume Association of College and University Housing Officers ­ International (ACUHO-I) Campus Management book series and co-authoring multiple research articles focusing on living-learning environments.

Dr. Lisa Will

Lisa Will, Ph.D.

R is for Thursday Network of Oklahoma, Leadership Team and Researcher
Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078

Dr. Will’s research interests focus on increasing access, removing barriers, and providing support for invisible student populations in college. Dr. Will actively collaborates with and educates diverse populations and stakeholders about foster alumni and higher education. She designed and teaches OSU’s graduate-level course on invisible populations (e.g., incarcerated students, Third Culture Kids, foster alumni, etc.), teaches helping skills for student affairs professionals, and was a primary designer of Oklahoma’s online training for statewide partners supporting college-bound or in college foster alumni, a site that also serves the state’s foster alumni.

Dr. Will represents Oklahoma in national forums on foster alumni and presents statewide and nationally on topics relating to foster alumni in college. As the primary statewide contact for R is for Thursday, Dr. Will also personally mentors former foster youth in college at multiple college campuses in Oklahoma, assists campus personnel seeking to create foster alumni support services at their campuses, and leads the communications efforts of the Oklahoma collaboration. In addition to her PhD in Higher Education Leadership and Policy Studies, Dr. Will holds a M.B.A. and a second master’s in human resource development from the University of Maryland. She has held positions in higher education in advising, career services, and high school relations.